Vital Ingredient (23-11-2021)
Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.” (John 6:35)
Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” (John 8:12)
“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” (John 10:11)
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die.” (John 11:25-26)
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6)
Many of you will be aware that I really enjoy baking. Whether baking cakes or bread, both give me a great deal of pleasure. However, you know that something has gone wrong when just after you have put the cakes in the oven you look up at the surface where you have been working and you see that one of the ingredients that was supposed to go into your cakes is still there on the side. This happened to me last Saturday. I was supposed to be baking St Clements cupcakes, which should contain both orange and lemon, however I completely forgot to put the lemon in, so they became orange cupcakes instead! The lemon, although rather important for them to be called St Clements, was not so important as to spoil the cakes, as orange cupcakes worked just as well.
This evening the final of The Great British Bake Off will be broadcast and many people will be watching to see which of the three remaining contestants is crowned this year’s winner. When taking part in a competition it is quite important to ensure that you remember to put in all the ingredients. There was one notable example earlier in the series when one of the contestants failed to put any flour in her sponge puddings and the result was a complete disaster. They were inedible and not surprisingly she left the competition that week.
In another week, contestants had to make bakes without using their usual ingredients, so bakes were free from diary or gluten for example. Alternatives were used such as soya milk or coconut milk, recipes were adapted but it wasn’t the same and the end results were not exactly as they would have been if the original ingredients had been allowed.
Life is much more important than any baking competition. As Christians we already have the vital ingredient. In life there is just one vital ingredient and that is Jesus. Without him in our lives, life will not be as full as they could be, there will always be something missing. Some people leave him out of their lives all together thinking that he is not necessary, while others try to replace him with something else, a substitute such as work, money or fame. In John’s gospel Jesus tells us that he is the way, the truth and the life, he is the vital ingredient that we need.
Jesus, be the centre, be my source, be my light.
Jesus, be the centre, be my hope, be my song.
Jesus, be my vision, be my path, be my guide.